Search This Blog

Thursday, May 5, 2016

New American Airlines promo: Up to 35% off on miles in celebration of their 35th anniversary

Last week I posted about a spring promotion from American Airlines offering up to a 75% bonus when buying/gifting miles which brought the cost down to 1.7 cents per mile if you bought the maximum amount of miles possible. That deal ended on April 28th but it appears they have another promotion for up to 35% off when you buy or gift miles in celebration of the AAdvantage program’s 35th anniversary.

This promo is running from May 4th - June 1st and requires that you purchase at least 15,000 AAdvantage miles or more in a single transaction to be eligible for the discount. Here is breakdown of the bonus miles and discount:
So if you maxed out the promotion and bought the full 150,000 miles (which is the maximum amount you are allowed to buy per calendar year) you would receive a total of 165,000 miles for $2,876.30 which doesn't include the $30 transaction processing fee and $215.72 in taxes bringing your total to $3,122.02 meaning each mile is costing 1.89 cents which isn't quite as good as their previous deal but still not bad. And just a reminder that these points do not count toward towards AAdvantage Gold, AAdvantage Platinum, AAdvantage Executive Platinum or AAdvantage Million Miler status qualification and are also processed by a third party so do not count as American purchases.


So should you take advantage of this offer? The answer depends on if you have a specific redemption in mind that would make it worthwhile. Most would say that AAdvantage miles are worth somewhere between 1.5-1.7 cents per mile so the offer in and of itself is not that spectacular. However, that's not to say you can't find instances in which you can get more than 1.89 cents per mile in value for award redemptions as I was able to discover firsthand while planning my trip to Germany in March. The cheapest round trip flights from Indianapolis (IND) to Nuremberg (NUE) are about $1,400 with prices going up as high as $2,900 in some instances for economy but I was able to find round trip economy MileSAAver award tickets for only 40,000 miles each giving me a value of roughly 3.5 cents per mile which is a great value and much better than the 1.89 cents per mile it would cost to purchase in this deal. And if I had elected to fly first class instead the prices increase exponentially to anywhere from $9,000-$11,000 per round trip ticket making any award redemption even more valuable. Plus this doesn't take into account the extra savings I would receive by gaining an extra 5,000 AAdvantage miles for every 20,000 Starpoints I transfer.

Bottom Line

While I am in the group of people that believes you shouldn't buy points speculatively unless you have a specific redemption in mind this deal can make sense in certain circumstances. Otherwise, I'd wait until the next promotion comes along. And remember, you can always transfer Starwood points at a 1:1 ratio and you receive an additional 5,000 points for every 20,000 points you transfer which is why Starpoints are probably the most valuable transferable currency out there.

No comments:

Post a Comment